Total appearances: Over 300 (n/a)
World Cups: 3
One of the first matches I can remember watching as a boy back in England was the opening game of the 1966 World Cup when England were held to a 0-0 draw against Uruguay at Wembley Stadium and part of the reason why England failed to score that night was Ladislao Mazurkiewicz, one of the world’s great goalkeepers
He was born of Polish and Spanish parents, had a glittering worldwide reputation and was regarded as one of the best goalkeepers in the world during his playing career. He played in three World Cup tournaments and was voted the top goalkeeper at the 1970 World Cup in Mexico, ahead of England’s Gordon Banks, and helped Uruguay reach the semi-finals of that tournament. He is probably most well known for being the Uruguayan goalkeeper in that famous highlight reel of Pele’s from that same tournament when the Brazilian maestro dummied him outside the penalty box following a through ball from Tostao, only to see his shot squeak by the post. Years later, Mazurkiewicz was still claiming, “he didn’t score, did he?”.
The Uruguayan had a trophy filled career, helping his club team, Penarol, to 3 League titles, the Copa Libertadores, and The Intercontinental Cup. He also won the Brazilian League Championship during his time at Athletico Mineiro.
Mazurkiewicz passed away only recently of a respiratory illness.